Saturday, October 9, 2010


Shadows of Doom (Iron Tower Trilogy)
Shadows of Doom must be a rare book as it's buried 5+ pages in on Amazon's Dennis McKiernan list and priced at a whole cent! I'm assuming that it must be at least a wheat penny in worth. It's the second book in the Iron Tower Trilogy and exactly 300 pages. I found the series at a used book shop(or something similar) on a family trip. I vaguely remember a barn sized room with tons of books. It's been a long time and I'm hoping that my review on finding the first book will sync up with this telling. It might be worth saying that the journey to find the books was probably more interesting than the story itself.

In the first review, I mentioned that Dennis McKiernan is more of a classical fantasy author. He's not really treading any new ground with this series. But after reading the second book, I think I've moved on to a new assumption. It feels like Dennis had The Lord of the Rings open on his desk and was using it as a sort of fantasy story concordance. <---LORD OF THE RINGS SPOILER ALERT---> I imagined it went much like....."I need something interesting to happen" ::searching through LOTR:: "Here we go.... find entrance to lost dwarven kingdom, use magical word to open door, and have a kraken attack and bust up the door". In case you haven't read or seen LOTR... THAT HAPPENS! He'll throw in some other random bits throughout the book, but this felt like it was taken right out of Tolkien's books and pasted in. =\ We have a Fellowship of Four in this book. <---END OF SPOILER--->

Just a few quick items to take with you:

1. If you are slightly interested in reading The Lord of the Rings, but don't want to read so many pages then go watch the movie. If you can't watch the movies(specifically, the extended versions) then read these books. You have about 900 pages between the three which should be a few less than LOTR.

2. I learned a new word and also learned that using old spellings should sometimes be curbed for proper definition. The new word was fulgently. It's such an awesome word that Blogger believes it's misspelled. It means dazzlingly bright. Next, secret and secrete don't mean the same thing. Don't use secrete to attempt to sound more like Olde English!

3. Leading up to the LOTR cave rip-off, I'm assaulted by the knowledge of some ghastly beast that ran tens of thousands of Dwarves from their favourite home. The beast was imprisoned during the great war and the prison was forgotten. The Dwarves dug into the prison and released the evil within. It proceeded to kill many a dwarf, some elves, and probably a few rodents. Even one of the great Dwarven heroes made it as far as the second corner before dying. The Gargon, ghastly beast, could only be contained by the long-dead wizards, and the group didn't have any of those. Wouldn't you think that this monster was something special? Nah, the moment comes and it ends up being an eight foot tall bipedal lizard. =\ At that point, the lizard ends up being taken out by one elf, one dwarf, one human and a hobbit... err, Warrow. The bane of all cave dwelling existence... slayer of all kind... gets killed by four "heroes". 


Rating: 3CBs - becoming more disappointed as the series goes on.


Friday, October 8, 2010

Vanity of Vanities

I think it has been over a month since I have posted anything on this blog.  So what happened to a book a week? 

Do you ever put yourself on an unintended sabbatical from those things which you really enjoy?  You just slowly move away from that which brings you joy and then a little while later sense the distance by the small amount of empty space in your life.  Okay, maybe it's just me, but my unintended sabbatical (in the midst of a challenge to read a book a week for a year) has been from reading and then writing about it here.  Not that I haven't been reading at all, I just have not been reading everyday.   The thrill is gone. 

The culprit?  Vanity Fair! 

I just can't seem to propel myself through this one.  I know there must be some of you out there who will cry out (in horror), "It's such a good book."  Really?   I can't say I follow.  I have been reading this book for a month (A MONTH) and I am not even half way through it.  But, I insist on plodding through until the end, because I doubt I would pick it up again (and if I did, that I would remember ANY of the characters, because I only vaguely can point them out now).    At the moment it is hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel, but I am pressing on. 

Have you read a book you thought would never end, but perservered?  Was it worth it?

Any encouragement would be appreciated.  There just may be a scathing review in it for you.